Wil Linkugel was many things, among them a fabled storyteller. Given the chance to get in the last word—a comment I trust would yield his winning, wide grin—I return his favor by beginning with my own Wil origins tale. With his beloved wit, he might dryly point out that I am a starring fıgure in places in the Wil Linkugel narrative. But, in truth, he plays both the leading roles and a vast cast of supporting ones throughout—in the truest meanings of such words. With a dutiful spoiler alert, the basic plotline of the brief essay that follows is this: Gifting—gift-receiving, gift-giving, and gift-circulating—are key themes about Wil Linkugel as a person, colleague, and award-winning public address teacher and scholar. All of these roles were cut from the same bolt of charity.

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Copyright © 2012 Michigan State University Press. This article first appeared in Rhetoric & Public Affairs 15:4 (2012), 695-706.

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